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Sonnenschein, Hugo mss., 1945-1946

Summary Information

Repository
Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
Lilly Library
Indiana University
1200 E. Seventh St.
Bloomington, IN 47405-5500
Phone: 812-855-2452
Fax: 812-855-3143
Email: liblilly@indiana.edu

Creator
Sonnenschein, Hugo, 1889-1953.

Title
Sonnenschein, Hugo mss., 1945-1946

Collection No.
LMC 2694

Extent
4 items

Language
Materials are in Czech and German.

Abstract
The Sonnenschein, Hugo mss., 1945–1946, consists of four bound manuscripts of poetry and memoirs by Hugo Sonnenschein (1889–1953), a German–language writer born in the Austro–Hungarian Empire, who often wrote under the pseudonym "Sonka."

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Biographical Note

Hugo Sonnenschein (1889–1953) published his first book of poetry in 1907 as a student in Vienna, and served as editor of the Czech Academic Club's almanac. After completing his military service in 1911, he wandered through Europe as a vagabond poet, continuing to write and publish while living in Paris, London and Berlin. During World War I he served on the Balkan front and was taken into custody several times for pacifist activities. After the war he turned to politics and helped found the Red Guard. In Prague he edited a communist weekly, and founded the Genossenschaftsverlag (Cooperative Publishing House) with Franz Werfel, Albert Ehrenstein and Alfred Adler. Die Legende vom weltverkommenen Sonka appeared in 1920 and is still considered his major work. Although he was a co–founder of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, he was expelled from the Party in 1927 for protesting against the persecution of Leo Trotzki. In 1939, as German troops entered Czechoslovakia, he was arrested by the secret police, and in 1943 deported to Auschwitz, along with his wife Rose, who was killed there. He was freed from the camp by the Red Army in 1945, taken to Moscow, and then returned to Prague, where he was imprisoned again and sentenced to twenty years on a charge of having collaborated with the State Police during the Second World War. He died on July 20th, 1953, while still in prison.

Scope and Content Note

The Sonnenschein, Hugo mss., 1945–1946, consists of four bound manuscripts of poetry and memoirs by Hugo Sonnenschein (1889–1953), a German–language writer born in the Austro–Hungarian Empire, who often wrote under the pseudonym "Sonka." The manuscripts in the collection include his poems written in Auschwitz ( Schritte des Todes: Traumworte, 1945; Death's Tread: Dreamwords), his personal political history, bound in two volumes and dated "14. IV. 1945," and a typescript with corrections of a Czech translation of Slowakische Heimat (Slovakian Homeland), translated by Emil Dvorak.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information
Acquired: 2006
Usage Restrictions
Prior arrangements are not necessary before coming to the Library, however, patrons from out of town are encouraged to communicate with the Library in advance of their visits to ascertain availability of materials.

Photocopying permitted only with permission of the Curator of Manuscripts, Lilly Library.

Preferred Citation
Sonnenschein, Hugo mss., Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.

Series: Collection

Further descriptive information for this collection is available on the Lilly Library website.


Sonka Schritte des Todes [:] Traumworte.

35 leaves (= [ii], [1], 2–33); wove paper (leaf [i]: white construction paper; leaf [ii]: brown construction paper; leaf [1] onion–skin paper; leaves 14–17: wide, darkly cream–colored sheets of paper, originally verso of a German commercial/administrative document form); thick, off–white endpapers. Red paper wrappers pasted on white construction paper, over which have been placed protective transparent plastic covers: decorative "S" pasted onto front cover.


Hugo Sonnenschein, Moje Slovácko [Czech translation of Slowakische Heimat ].

43 unnumbered leaves (= [i], [33], [9]); wove paper (leaf [i]: thick off–white paper; leaves [1–33]: thin off–white typing paper; leaves [B1–B9]: thick off–white paper); thick, off–white endpapers. Grey cardboard–paper jacket folded over blue cardboard covers, over which have been placed protective transparent plastic covers: decorative red "S" pasted at an angle onto the lower right corner of the front cover.


[Sonka], Můj stručný životopis (politický) [= "My (Political) Biography in Brief" ].

11 leaves (= [iii], 8); wove paper (leaf [i]: thick off–white paper; leaves [ii–iii ]: thick mottled orange paper; 8 leaves thin off–white typing paper; thick, semi–translucent, onion–skin protective sheets with spider–web design precede leaves [ii–iii]; following the last of the numbered sheets are stubs for attaching at least two more sheets of paper; no visible indication that these were used); thick, off–white endpapers. Red cardboard–paper jacket folded over dull cardboard covers, over which have been placed protective transparent plastic covers: decorative off–white "S" pasted at an angle onto the lower right corner of the front cover. The book is written in Sonka's hand throughout.


[Sonka], Doplněk životopisu II [= "Addendum to the Autobiography" ].

10 leaves ( [i], [9]) = [i], 18 pp.; wove paper (leaf [i]: thick off–white paper; leaves [1]– [9] (= pp. 1–4, [2], 5–16): thin off–white typing paper; thick, semi–translucent, onion–skin protective sheets with spider–web design precede leaves [1–9]; following the last of the numbered sheets are stubs for attaching at least one more sheet of paper; no visible indication that these were used); thick, off–white endpaper in front. Red cardboard–paper jacket folded over dull cardboard covers, over which have been placed protective transparent plastic covers: decorative off–white "S" pasted at an angle onto the lower right corner of the front cover. The book is written in Sonka's hand throughout; text is in Czech, with some German passages (noted below).